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  You are here: RoboFlag Main Page > Course Resources > Reference Material > Web Links

  Web Links and Other Resources

This collection of web links and comments is excellent reading material for technical reference, design ideas, or as inspirational material. The links are seperated into the following sections:

The technical content is as follows:

Robot-Related Frequently-Asked-Questions (FAQs)

The Robotics FAQ
This is probably the most important link on the whole page. This FAQ collects questions and comments posted on the comp.robotics.* newsgroups, and is an excellent place to start looking for more information.

Robotics Mini-FAQ
This mini-FAQ has a collection of links to further information. The comments are excellent, and this is a good starting spot.

Robot Competition FAQ
A list of robot contests and competitions, including links to the competition sites and reviews of the rules and regulations.

The Metal Construction Set FAQ
Slanted toward robotics enthusiasts rather than collectors, this site covers Meccano/Erector, Exacto, Temsi, and Marklin Metall.


Parallel Port FAQ
A brief tutorial about interfacing to your IBM PC's parallel port - one of the easiest ways to collect data and control outputs (lights, motors, etc).

Realtime computing FAQ
This is a summary of Q&A postings to comp.realtime - and includes a large amount of information regarding real-time systems, and where you can go to learn more.

8051, 68hc11, COP8, Micro FAQ
This contains a link to both the 8051 uCPU FAQ and the embedded processor FAQ from the newsgroups: comp.arch.embedded, comp.robotics.misc, comp.realtime,, alt.comp.hardware.homebuilt, and etc.

Robotics Resource Lists (more links!)

Info on Hobby Robots
Compiled from comp.robotics.*, this informal list of hobby robotics resources is a good starting place. Many links are repeated from before, and some don't work, but there's enough here to warrant a visit.

Robot Link Information Page
A little bit of a rip-off from Arrick Robotics' list, this list of links has many sites listed that aren't present on the Arrick page.


Robot Information Central
One of the most exhaustive lists of links and online resource materials I've ever seen. I still use Arrick Robotics' huge list of links.

A Yahoo! site with robotics in mind, these guys claim to have the world's largest index of robotics resources. They have up-to-date robotics news, and a good collection of technical links.

Other and Previous Competitions

Robot Competition FAQ
A list of robot contests and competitions, including links to the competition sites and reviews of the rules and regulations.

Western Canadian Robot Games
The BEAM/WCRG Millennium Robot Games is an organization devoted to the advancement of interest in Science and Technology. Largest variety of events and contests in North America!

Manitoba Robot Games
Based around the Western Canadian Robot Games, MRG is brought to us by Science Council Manitoba to promote interest in Science and Technology.


Trinity College Fire-Fighting Contest
The largest open-to-the-public robotics competition in the US. Many robot contests and competitions are based on the success of Trinity's programs. Has been running since 1993.

Robot Battle
A virtual competition, where algorithms compete in a simulated battle. This would be a good place for software people to start.

Canada First!
Canada First is a team-based robotics competition sponsored and assisted by business and industry to motivate students to take math, science and technology to expand the pool of "technology literate" graduates.

Robotics University Programs

Carnegie Mellon's Robotics Institute
Carnegie Mellon University has one of the most respected robotics programs in the world. This is where ground-breaking research takes place.

MIT AI Lab: The Mobot Group
The MIT Artificial Intelligence Laboratory performs a broad range of research on mobile robots and autonomous systems. These guys produce some cool 'bots.


MIT's Artificial Intelligence Lab
Center for all of MITs robot projects and labs.

Clubs, Groups and Projects

Autonomous Robotic Vehicle Project
A course offered by the University of Alberta. Students have been contributing to this project since 1996.

Dallas Personal Robotics Group
One of the oldest US robotics groups - these guys have been around since 1985! Good information and technical resources available.

Seattle Robotics Society
The Seattle Robotics Society was formed in 1982 to serve those interested in learning about and building robots.

Portland Area Robotics Society
Portland Area Robotics Society is a club formed to help those interested in learning about and building robots.


Vancouver Robotics Club
The Vancouver Robotics Club is a meeting place for people who like building robots. Good source of information.

Rockies Robotics Group
Located in Colorado, these guys have an extensive list of robotics resources.

Winnipeg Area Robotics Society
The Winnipeg Area Robotics Society was created for the advancement of science and engineering through the medium of robotics.

Art and Robotics Group
Located in Toronto, these guys span the gap between art and robotics. Some excellent ideas and links.

Suppliers and Parts

HVW Technologies: Microcontrollers & Robotics
This Canadian-based parts supplier has an excellent selection of sensors, hardware, and other "hard-to-get" robot parts you can't get elsewhere.

Tower Hobbies
A hobby shop aimed mostly at the remote-control model market, but they have a number of cheap items, like servomotors, that work well for robotics.

Toronto Surplus
A large Toronto surplus store with a good web-presence. They have everything from surplus airplane parts to weather balloons.


Princess Auto
An excellent farm, hobby and salvage store, with fabulous deals on all kinds of exotic parts. These guys stock motors, batteries, tools, etc. They have several locations in the Ottawa-Carleton region.

Aerosystems International
A Canadian distributor for Parallax and Scott Edwards Electronics/


Nuts & Volts Magazine
Exploring Electronics & Technology - for the hobbyist and professional.

Circuit Cellar
The Computer Applications Journal - offering hands-on applications and solutions for embedded-control designers.

Electronic Design Magazine
The Design Source for Engineers and Managers Worldwide - a little high-level for our needs, but still pretty good.


Robot Science and Technology
An excellent quarterly (when they meet their deadlines) magazine that deals with robotics, science, and technology. This is a good 'tech' magazine, with lots of hands-on stuff.

Hobby Electronics
Some good articles, but not much content here.

Everyday Practical Electronics
A UK-based practical electronics technology and computer projects 'zine.

PIC Microprocessors

PIC Books
This is the list of recommended PIC Books for the RoboFlag course.

MicroChip Technology
These guys make and sell PICmicros, the small microcontrollers that are so easy to design and use. Their site is very good, with free software and excellent application notes.

Peter H. Anderson's PIC Page
Peter Anderson offers a large number of microprocessor kits for sale, as well as a number of books and magazines. His site is an excellent resource for getting things done cheaply.

Dontronics PICmicro Links
A collection of links to PIC material, references, and projects. Dontronics has done excellent work collecting all these valuable links, and if you have PIC questions, this would be a good place to start.


Eric's PIC Page
Has some PIC projects that are of relevence to our robotics course. Specifically, serial IR communication.

David Tait's PIC Links
David Tait recently retired from the PIC hobby business, but his exhaustive list of links lives on! This is another excellent link page, with tons of relevent sites.

Another list of links based on David Tait's original work.

MIT HandyBoard

The MIT Handy Board
The official site for the MIT HandyBoard - the microcontroller board that we will be using for the robotics project. This 68HC11-based board was designed for experimental mobile robotics work.

HandyBoard Reference Manual
The HandyBoard reference manual in PDF format. Please read this right away.


MIT HandyBoard Resources
A collection of HandyBoard links and references for intermediate to advanced use of the HandyBoard. Another great collection of links starts here.

HandyBoard Tutorial
A tutorial from the University of Alberta, this site includes examples and code snippets for common tasks, and even hardware tips and tricks.


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